Must-Know Foster Care College Statistics [Current Data]

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In this post, we explore the stark statistics surrounding foster care youth and their journey through college education. From low graduation rates to aspirations versus actual enrollment, the data sheds light on the challenges and disparities faced by this vulnerable population.

Statistic 1

"Only around 3% of former foster youth graduate from college, compared to the overall national college graduation rate of 59%."

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Statistic 2

"About 46% of foster care youth set the goal of attending college."

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Statistic 3

"Approximately 20% of foster youth who graduate high school attend post-secondary education or training."

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Statistic 4

"84% of foster youth want to go to college, but only 20% attend."

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Statistic 5

"A study in Texas found that 75% of foster care youth enrolled in the Texas public postsecondary education system within one year of graduation."

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Statistic 6

"Eligible foster youth can access a tuition waiver in 28 states for higher education."

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Statistic 7

"Only about 60% of foster youth graduate from high school or earn a GED, compared to 91% of the general population."

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Statistic 8

"Foster care alumni have a 40% higher likelihood of enrolling in a community college compared to other students."

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Statistic 9

"Approximately 8.1% of foster care alumni were enrolled in a four-year college or university in Missouri."

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Statistic 10

"A Midwest study found that 16% of foster care alumni attended four-year colleges or universities."

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Statistic 11

"Foster youth aged out of the foster care system have a 24.1% rate of enrollment in post-secondary education."

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Statistic 12

"Among foster care alumni, 27% of youth experienced homelessness within one year of high school completion."

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Statistic 13

"Former foster youth are 10% more likely to drop out of college within six years than their peers who were not in foster care."

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Statistic 14

"Around 70% of the 23,000 young people who age out of foster care in the United States each year aspire to attend college."

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Statistic 15

"In Washington state, approximately 72% of youth in foster care expected to enroll in college after high school, but only 62% actually did."

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The statistics presented highlight the concerning disparities and challenges that foster care youth face when pursuing higher education. While a significant percentage of foster youth express the desire to attend college, various obstacles prevent them from achieving their educational goals, resulting in low rates of college graduation. Access to resources such as tuition waivers and support programs can play a crucial role in improving educational outcomes for foster care alumni. Efforts to address the unique needs of foster youth, including housing stability and academic support, are essential in increasing their college enrollment and graduation rates.

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